2019 The teenage dream to run my own business now felt like a nightmare that was overwhelming me. But, the time had come to turn the dream into an action goal.
I started my journey by studying a Certificate 4 in New Small Business to gain the necessary knowledge and develop basic business skills. While I studied, the NEIS (New Enterprise Incentive Scheme) program in Australia provided a business mentor for one year for support and accountability.
So, now as a mature woman, I was off and running toward my teenage dream. First I had to define my business idea, which for me was centred around my wordsmith skills. This was achieved by completing by developing a detailed Business Plan.
It was intense and challenging, yet exciting to answer the many important questions necessary to define my business idea:
- What was my business name, pitch and mission statement?
- What was my ideal client profile?
- How much would I charge for my service/product?
- How would I process payments, complaints, product returns?
- Where would my business be located and what method would I use, would it be face to face, online or a mixture of both?
The most important question of them all, why did I want to build a business? The answer to this question would determine my level of determination, persistence and focus to achieve the end result. What would the end result (my established business) look like? Would I remain a sole trader, would I employ people in one location or expand to more locations?
This line of questioning was new to me. It stretched my mind to think outside of my existing pattern of thought processing. Being an analytical person by nature, I loved this space. As a mature woman, it gave me a fresh lease of life going forward after divorce and Empty Nest Syndrome. So, my business idea was to help other mature women define their career and business goals through one on one, face to face consultation.
While I was studying, I secured one year of work as a Relief Manager of a boutique Backpackers Hostel in the pictureque seaside township of Yeppoon, Queensland, Australia. This was a huge confidence builder for me. This line of work gave me hands on experience of what it was like to be responsible as a solo business manager. Being responsible for everything, to make decisions and be accountable. Sure, I made a few mistakes, but overall I enjoyed it and succeeded.
February 2020 After my year of work finished, I returned to my home town to visit my family. Two weeks after arriving back in Brisbane, Coronavirus shut down the world. March and April were spent in lockdown, with family members and a dear friend, living out of one small suitcase of summer clothes and my laptop.
Thinking that Covid would be a temporary glitch in my plan, I put aside my business plan for the time being and I spent lockdown studying an online course with Authentic Education on how to write and self-publish a non-fiction book. As the lock down months rolled on, I wrote the first draft of my adult life story. It was not easy for me to break out of the short sentence structure of my poetic style of writing. This exercise clarified my passion and love for writing poetry. I decided I wanted my story told in story form, so I handed my raw amateur draft over to Kate Kelsen, a passionate and established author, to rewrite my draft into a novel. She had written my mother’s life story into the novel called The Wilted Rose, which will be available in late 2021.
Still in and out of lockdown, I spent the last few months of 2020 completing several internet courses by Ted McGrath to learn how to market myself online. I was encouraged by this course as it taught a storytelling model of marketing by explaining how to connect with my audience whilst remaining authentic, being myself and being real and sharing my personality through my marketing. Although I felt vulnerable knowing that I would be putting myself out there publically, this was the style of marketing that I knew I would feel comfortable and confident using.
I was ready to come out from behind my poetry desk and tell the world who I was and what I had to offer through my wordsmith skills, why and how much I wanted to send ripples of encouragement and joy to the world through my poetry.
May my poetry send you ripples of encouragement and joy.